Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Women Making Partner, Gaining Ground

Last year, The American Lawyer began tracking partner promotions at large firms to see how women candidates were faring.  In 2012, its study found that 30 percent of lawyers making partner were women. Here’s information on this year’s study:

With [last year] as a benchmark, we examined the 1,926 partner promotions made by 183 firms in 2012 and found that the ratio of women had edged up to 32 percent. Some firms, of course, fared better in terms of the male/female breakdown. Choate Hall & Stewart and Hughes Hubbard & Reed both had new partner classes that were entirely female (to be fair, each only promoted one lawyer). The five firms at which women constituted a majority in new partner classes of 10 or more also deserve mention: Fox Rothschild (7 women of the firm's 13 new partners), Jackson Walker (7 of 11), Littler Mendleson (7 of 13), Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart (9 of 16), and Perkins Coie (7 of 12). At the other end of the spectrum, 27 firms—including Haynes and Boone (nine new partners) and Ice Miller (eight)—did not promote a single woman to their partnership ranks in 2012. (Click here to see last year's interactive Women Partner Watch chart.)

Judging by the 2013 partner promotion announcements we had received from 66 firms as of February 22, women are making additional gains this year. Of the 717 new partners those firms promoted, 250, or 35 percent, were women. At five firms—Including Nixon Peabody (8 women out of 13 new partners) and Carlton Fields (8 out of 12)—the ratio tops 60 percent. Meanwhile, some firms that fared poorly by this measure of gender diversityin 2012 are doing better this year. That includes Haynes & Boone, where three of this year's eight new partners were women.

You can access the interactive chart here.



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